Why apply?

Why join NYO?

NYO is more than an orchestra, it is a dynamic community of brilliant teenage musicians making orchestral music with, by and for their generation. Being part of NYO means being an integral part of a community of passionate musicians, driven by a belief that sharing a love of music is fun, will develop your skills and has the potential to make a powerful and positive contribution to society. Being in NYO is all about fulfilling your potential both as a young musician but also as a young person in society. Every performance you give will be aimed directly at other young people, to share your love of music widely and to encourage and engage other musicians progressing on their musical journey. Applications for NYO 2023 are now closed but read on for more information about the year ahead and to get a sense of what to expect from future activity.

Music for life 

Whether you hope to become a professional musician or just love playing music with others, the welcoming and friendly community of NYO is for you.  We explore and perform a vibrant and diverse repertoire of orchestral music ranging from well-known orchestral works of the 20th century to ground-breaking music from composers from all backgrounds and genres writing the music of today.


NYO musicians are creative and innovative, and performances often feature music devised or curated by the performers themselves whether through creative workshops or through individual research and inspiration.


NYO musicians work with professional orchestral musicians, composers and creators to develop their skills and unlock their potential. Most importantly, NYO musicians learn from each other with peer-learning the central foundation of the NYO experience.


Playing in the NYO...was not only a massive challenge, but also incredibly inspiring. It completely changed my life, and inspired me with the aspirational values that have guided me since then.

Sir Clive Gillinson

Executive & Artistic Director, Carnegie Hall
cello, NYO 1963-65

NYO 2023

The NYO year features three rehearsal and concert residencies structured around the school holidays, and a role for every musician in NYO Inspire which will involve some weekend and half term dates. Every musician will engage live for around 40 days altogether. There will also be digital webinars, training and preparation, and creative sessions to connect the whole NYO community of orchestra and NYO Inspire musicians.  


Here are some outline dates:

Winter Residency 30 December 2022 – 8 January 2023 (with some musicians staying until 10 January for schools concerts)

Spring Residency 6 – 16 April 2023 (with some musicians staying until 18 April for schools concerts)

Summer Residency 23 July – 5 August 2023


You’ll also be asked your availability so that we can allocate you to 3-10 days of NYO Inspire activity, taking on your responsibility as a role model and supporter to the next generation of young musicians. It’s important that you commit to NYO Inspire dates just as much as the NYO residencies and ideally you would be available for as many of the dates as you can, so we can allocate the projects that would most suit you.


NYO Inspire Ensembles: February 2023 half term (dates tbc)

NYO Inspire Orchestra Days: Five dates across Spring 2023

NYO Inspire Orchestra: Two weeks in July 2023



NYO taught me about self-discipline, about getting
on with lots of different types of people, about excellence in the arts, about how to really listen.

Alison Balsom

International trumpet soloist

NYO 1994-97

Musical ambassadors and role models


NYO musicians are artists, ambassadors, and aspiring leaders, encouraging other young people to embrace orchestral music. Whether through performing to other teenagers or through acting as role-models in the NYO Inspire programme, NYO musicians ensure that there is an open door for musical participation and engagement for their generation.


I find teaching very rewarding….It feels like a big family with each teacher passing information down from generation to generation.

Matilda Lloyd

trumpet, NYO 2014

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